Sinai Beach

Immersed

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If, at the time of this album's 2005 release, there was any doubt left about the ability of a Christian band to get as hard and heavy as its secular counterparts, Sinai Beach obliterated it. IMMERSED is as aggressive, angry, and flat-out scary as metal gets. In addition, the group's lyrical treatment of metal-mainstay topics such as societal ills, death, hell, and suicide, is often more pointed and emotional than that of the band's non-Christian contemporaries.

Though the band's raging sound varies from track to track, the core Sinai Beach formula consists of grinding guitar riffs of the Black Sabbath/Pantera variety, mind-blowingly fast double-bass drumming (courtesy of skin-basher Mike Dunlap), and animalistic howling from throat-shredder Mike "the Bear" Risinger. "Necessary Bloodshed" is a case in point, featuring a funky thrash riff paired with a stomping half-time section. "To the Church" combines an industrial edge with a pile-driving electronic beat and rich, melodic baritone singing. An intense and technically accomplished slab of faith-based heaviness, IMMERSED should appeal to any fan of classic metal, regardless of spiritual inclination.

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